Atlantic salmon you see in the shops are "battery farmed". You have no option other than that. All slogans such as "Sustainable", "Organic" etc have been proven false.
They are densely stocked in floating 30-40m cages in Scottish sea lochs, up to 70,000 fish in each. A typical 12 cage farm will have up to 1 Million salmon in close proximity.
In over 40yrs, virtually NONE of the waste has been cleaned up. This contains residual toxic chemicals used to treat diseases etc, dissolved and particulate excrement containing the same, fish mucus, scales, bacteria, algae - the list is long.
But we also have a situation where our Government ministers are hell-bent on expansion of the industry, while all along they cannot provide a total or broken down figure for Net Profit. For all we know, the industry could be running at a loss. Many reports have made assumptions of the "value" to Scotland but the Government use obscure one-man-band companies to derive these figures and not a robust and respected 'think tank'.
To further complicate matters, disease and sea lice burdens on the feedlots at sea result in mass mortalities.
Between 1 in 3 and 1 in 4 fish have died at sea in the last 10 years.
Still the ministers uphold the myth of "sustainability" and that the product is of the highest quality.
It is now clear that the government have no place to hide. Following two reports commissioned to investigate the detrimental effects of Salmon farming, the lack of regulation and commitment to fish welfare & environmental quality has been exposed. The mortality rate is higher than the rate of growth. Lice have proved impossible to eradicate and they just keep pumping more and more money into a flatlining industry. Our cash - taxpayers money.
They say that "the status-quo is not an option". Does this mean that Fergus Ewing is actually sincere about the horrific environmental issues or does it mean that the rate of mortalities is holding back production and he's just not happy with that?
A recent Freedom of Information enquiry found that out of the £1 Billion+ revenues from Salmon farming, only 0.16% was spent on their licence to dump toxic waste at sea.
A licence to POLLUTE!
It isn't clear what the future is. Do we take these massive feedlots onto land in tanks as Recirculating Aquaculture Systems (RAS) with the possibility of watercourse pollution, more disease & mass mortalities & possible escapes - or put them out to "high energy" sites offshore where escapes are almost guaranteed and full automation means low employment? In August 2020, a feedlot was ruptured and 50,000 salmon escaped. Mowi has made no effort to recapture these fish. Why should they? One of their directors has said "It has happened before and will happen again". These lost fish are merely "collateral damage", the loss will be insured and tax written-off. Meanwhile the wild fish gene pool is left to pickup the tab.
And what do we feed these farmed fish of the future? Stocks of wild fish ingredients are running low - talk of even breeding flies on domestic waste are now touted. Zero Waste Scotland are behind that idea - when they should be campaigning to end the waste we see right now - 20 million dead salmon every year!
So, we have witnessed parasitic infestations, disease outbreaks, algal blooms, even jellyfish wiping out millions of fish. Yet, there are no clear answers and the money is still being poured in.
Hopefully this website will help you to decide what should happen.